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Wow, it’s been a while since my last column, hasn’t it? Unfortunately, I’ve done less writing this summer than I have in years. I’ve been really busy, though, which doesn’t allow much time for writing.

Much has happened in my absence. I spent a month in Florida at the end of April. I got two new jobs, at the Go-Pher Stops in Clarks Grove and Ellendale, and I’m actually really enjoying them — apart from the 6 a.m. shifts every other weekend, but waking up early is good for me. A little self-discipline never hurt anyone, right?

I’m also looking into buying a car, which reminds me: if you’ve noticed an obnoxious rattling followed by a black Eclipse with a bad paint job and bright blue duct tape on the bumper around New Richland, Ellendale, Hartland or Clarks Grove lately, that would be me. Trust me. I know how annoying it is.

I turn 20 in a day, which isn’t too exciting. No new privileges are gained, so it’s really just another year gone by.

Today, I recognize the three-year anniversary of my grandmother’s death. I can’t believe it’s been that long. I still miss her so much. But the more time that goes by, the more sure I am that her passing brought me a guardian angel. I don’t know how I would have made it out of my car accident last year without a scratch otherwise. Combine that with the death of a close friend and reaching the lowest point in my life, the last year and a half has been the most difficult time of my life. If I didn’t have a little help from upstairs, I wouldn’t be where I am now, which is a place I haven’t been in years. I’m happier and healthier than I’ve been in a long time. I finally have my life back on track and I couldn’t be more grateful.

So, thank you Grandma. And thanks to my family, friends and loved ones. Your support means more than you could know.

I’m looking forward to the future and it’s a great feeling. I plan to write more often, though my column can’t be expected every week for a while. And if you see me at one of the stores I work at, don’t be afraid to say hi!

Until next time, remember to keep your chin up, no matter what. I’m a living example that things will get better.

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